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In the March issue of our Member’s Circle newsletter, we wrote about bitcoins, a type of digital currency sometimes referred to as a “virtual currency.” One of the points we made in that bitcoin article was that although there are some promoting bitcoins as the currency of the future, others were sounding warnings about the risks inherent in this uninsured and unregulated digital currency.
On Monday, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) weighed in with a consumer advisory about the risks of virtual currencies like bitcoin. “Virtual currencies may have potential benefits,” said CFPB Director Richard Cordray, “but consumers need to be cautious and they need to be asking the right questions. Virtual currencies are not backed by any government or central bank, and at this point consumers are stepping into the Wild West when they engage in the market.”